Travel's Best All-American Vacations 2015 Advisors
Meet the panel of advisors behind Travel’s Best All-American Vacations 2015. Our advisors have traveled the nation looking for the best destinations to get a true taste of Americana and to marvel at the nation’s natural wonders and iconic landmarks.
From tiny-house owners Guillaume Dutilh and Jenna Spesard to US Marine and editor of The Dining Traveler Jessica van Dop DeJesus, our experts have determined the best getaways that are distinctly all-American.
Fueled by a strong desire to explore the world in an alternative way, Jenna and Guillaume built a tiny house on wheels with a giant journey in mind. After a year of construction, they hit the road towing their custom tiny cabin to all 4 corners of the United States (and lower Canada). So far they’ve gone 15,000 miles in 9 months, adventuring through 30 states and hosting dozens of open houses. Along their journey they've canoed through the Florida Everglades, snowboarded down one of Oregon’s famous volcanoes, and hiked through deserts, forests and mountains. Always ready for a challenge, the couple have even dared to squeeze their tiny home through the narrow streets of Manhattan!
Their project has been featured by countless news outlets, including Yahoo, AOL, the Huffington Post, the United Kingdom's Daily Mail, USA Today, Business Insider, WGN, BuzzFeed, BoredPanda and now the Travel Channel. You might also recognize them from their featured episode on HGTV’s new show Tiny House Big Living. Follow the Tiny House Giant Journey on their blog, YouTube, Instagram and Facebook as they continue their travels to Alaska (and beyond).
Jessica and her family can be described in 1 word —average. They are a middle-class family living in Middle America right smack in the middle of the suburbs. To take a break from the ordinary, they travel the world looking for extraordinary adventures. The family’s trips are chronicled at Suitcases and Sippy Cups, where you can find travel tips and travel inspiration with a healthy dose of "keeping it real."
Robin Bennefield is a freelance writer, digital media producer and author of the travel blog Robins Have Wings. She’s got a bad case of wanderlust, prone to spontaneous travel near or far. Her meanderings have led her to explore the shores of Sri Lanka and temples of Angkor Wat, dance the salsa in Cuba, and go cider swilling in New Zealand’s Hobbiton. She has climbed a volcano in Nicaragua, shopped for knockoff designer handbags in the back room of a kitchen in Shanghai, China, and watched camels wander through her tented camp in the Sahara. She often shares her travel stories with TravelChannel.com, but she also has also written for Discovery.com, TVOne.tv and Ebony.com.
Jessica van Dop DeJesus is the editor of the food and travel blog the Dining Traveler based in Washington, DC. She began traveling as a young US Marine 17 years ago and has been to 40 countries on and off duty. She spent most of her post-collegiate years overseas, starting with a tour in Okinawa, Japan and most recently spent 6 years in Belgium (with a year in Germany in between). She comes from a bicultural upbringing as she split her childhood between Puerto Rico and western New York. All of those experiences give her a broad perspective on food and travel. Her content has been featured in publications such as USA Today, Budget Travel, Edible DC, Telemundo, and Ink361.